THE DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) AND ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION-MAKING

2,267 views

Published on

Copyright Ian Ellis-Jones 2012. All Rights Reserved. See also my SlideShare paper entitled ‘From “Inebriation” to “Severe Substance Dependence” … or Long Day’s Journey into Light’ (A Paper Presented at the 4th New South Wales Addiction Medicine Training Day, ‘Involuntary Treatment for Substance Disorders in NSW’, at Northern Sydney Education Centre, Macquarie Hospital, North Ryde NSW Australia, on 4 December 2012).

Published in: Health & Medicine
0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total views
2,267
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
2
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
19
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

THE DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) AND ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION-MAKING

  1. 1. THE DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) AND ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION-MAKING Dr Ian Ellis-Jones PhD Solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Australia Former Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Law, University of Technology, Sydney Lecturer, New South Wales Institute of Psychiatry Consultant - Trainer - Facilitator - Wellness Instructor and Practitioner Some Slides Courtesy Warner Bros Pictures and Google Images. All Rights Reserved.
  2. 2. 2
  3. 3. THE DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 3
  4. 4. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) Overview •Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) created to provide legal basis for … •2-year trial … – short-term involuntary care and treatment …group of persons … • with severe substance dependence • detoxification to rebuild health • linked in a planned and considered way to longer-term rehabilitation and support •Involuntary Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program (the ‘Program’) 4
  5. 5. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) • first people treated … – part of the Drug and Alcohol Involuntary Treatment Trial – living in the Sydney West Area Health Service catchment area. 5
  6. 6. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) • An accredited medical practitioner (‘AMP’) can issue a dependency certificate … – person can be detained … • for up to 28 days … in the first instance 6
  7. 7. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) A dependency certificate … • may be issued in relation to a person only if the AMP is satisfied … • the person has a severe substance dependence, and • care, treatment or control of the person is necessary to protect the person from serious harm, and • the person is likely to benefit from treatment for his or her substance dependence but has refused treatment, and • no other appropriate and less restrictive means for dealing with the person are reasonably available. 7
  8. 8. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) • AMP can also take into account … – any serious harm that may occur to … • children in the care of the person, or • other dependants • Places where people are being treated under the Act ... – the Centre for Addiction Medicine at Nepean Hospital – Bloomfield Campus, Mental Health and Drug & Alcohol Services, at Orange 8
  9. 9. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) • A magistrate must review a dependency certificate … – as soon as practicable after it is issued • The magistrate can: – discharge a patient, or – uphold, extend or shorten the time of involuntary treatment under a dependency certificate. 9
  10. 10. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) • Legal aid … – available through duty solicitors for the reviews held before the visiting magistrate • If unhappy with magistrate's decision … – one can apply to the Administrative Decisions Tribunal (ADT) for a review of the decision. 10
  11. 11. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) Official Visitors … •same role as official visitors under the Mental Health Act 2007 (NSW) •a client can contact an official visitor … – concerns about care and treatment as an involuntary patient under the trial – complaints and concerns about the physical conditions at the hospital. 11
  12. 12. Finding Legislation NEW SOUTH WALES LEGISLATION www.legislation.nsw.gov.au www.austlii.edu.au/au/nsw/ NEW SOUTH WALES LEGISLATION www.legislation.nsw.gov.au www.austlii.edu.au/au/nsw/ COMMONWEALTH LEGISLATION www.comlaw.gov.au www.austlii.edu.au/au/cth/ COMMONWEALTH LEGISLATION www.comlaw.gov.au www.austlii.edu.au/au/cth/
  13. 13. 14
  14. 14. 15
  15. 15. Types of Legislation • Primary Legislation – Acts of Parliament (aka statutes) • Subordinate Legislation (statutory instruments) – aka Delegated Legislation … –Rules, Regulations, By-laws, Ordinances, etc.
  16. 16. TYPES OF PRIMARY LEGISLATION AMENDING ACT •Mental Health Legislation Amendment (Forensic Provisions) Act 2008 (NSW) Acts of Parliament (statutes) generally fall into 2 types: PRINCIPAL ACT •Mental Health Act 2007(NSW) •Drug and Alcohol TreatmentAct 2007 (NSW)
  17. 17. From time to time Acts are REPRINTEDand all the amendments are incorporatedinto the principal Act … that is, the principal Act is up to the date as at the date of thereprint. Where a principal Act is amended a SIDE NOTE or END NOTE is inserted providing a history of the section. If a principal Act has been amended after the last reprint then the amending Actand the principal Act must be read together.
  18. 18. Reading Primary Legislation STATUTE Structure of Legislation Examples Chapters ………..Chapter 1 Parts……………..Part 2 Divisions……..… Division 4 Subdivisions…….Subdivision 2 Section…….….....s.20 Subsection……....s.20(4) Paragraph.……....s.20(4)(b) Subparagraph…..s.20(4)(b)(i) STATUTE Structure of Legislation Examples Chapters ………..Chapter 1 Parts……………..Part 2 Divisions……..… Division 4 Subdivisions…….Subdivision 2 Section…….….....s.20 Subsection……....s.20(4) Paragraph.……....s.20(4)(b) Subparagraph…..s.20(4)(b)(i)
  19. 19. Reading Subordinate Legislation STATUTORY INSTRUMENT Structure of Legislation Examples Chapters ………..Chapter 1 Parts……………..Part 2 Divisions……..… Division 4 Subdivisions…….Subdivision 2 Clause…….…......cl.20 Subclause…….....cl.20(4) Paragraph.……....cl.20(4)(b) Subparagraph…..cl.20(4)(b)(i) Item………………Item 1 or Sch 1(1) STATUTORY INSTRUMENT Structure of Legislation Examples Chapters ………..Chapter 1 Parts……………..Part 2 Divisions……..… Division 4 Subdivisions…….Subdivision 2 Clause…….…......cl.20 Subclause…….....cl.20(4) Paragraph.……....cl.20(4)(b) Subparagraph…..cl.20(4)(b)(i) Item………………Item 1 or Sch 1(1)
  20. 20. By their very nature words in the English language can be interpreted in different ways and can have different meanings in different contexts. When a court is asked to interpret legislation the court is being asked to determine: - the meaning of the words in a statutory provision, and - the circumstances in which the provision applies (‘scope’). INTERPRETATION OF LEGISLATION
  21. 21. • Never read a section of an Act in isolation. • Always read a section in light of all other sections of the Act. • Where there is or appears to be a conflict or inconsistency between 2 or more provisions of an Act … –adopt if possible an interpretation which would harmonise as far as possible the several provisions. … How to Interpret an Act of Parliament How to Interpret an Act of Parliament
  22. 22. • The sense (legal or otherwise) in which a statute uses a word or phrase is a question of law. • The meaning of an “ordinary” word or phrase in a statute is a question of fact ... – Such a word or phrase is to be given its ordinary everyday meaning. – Use a reputable dictionary of the English language to ascertain the ordinary meaning of ordinary words in the English language. … How to Interpret an Act of Parliament How to Interpret an Act of Parliament
  23. 23. • The meaning of a truly “legal” word or phrase in a statute, or even an ordinary word that is intended to have a “legal” meaning in the statute, is a question of law ... – Use a reputable legal dictionary to ascertain the meaning of legal words or phrases … – Use a reputable medical dictionary to ascertain the meaning of medical words, and so forth. How to Interpret an Act of Parliament How to Interpret an Act of Parliament
  24. 24. • What is the ordinary meaning of the words? • Do the words have a particular legal or medical meaning? • Does the context in which the section appears in the Act affect its meaning? • What is the purpose of the section? • What was Parliament attempting to achieve by including the section in the Act? • How have Courts interpreted (defined) the words in the section? • Would this interpretation lead to an absurd result? How to Interpret an Act of Parliament How to Interpret an Act of Parliament - ASK YOURSELF -
  25. 25. • A statute should be given a purposive construction … – to ensure that, so far as possible, the objects of the Act are achieved. • Avoid an unduly narrow interpretation of the words used by Parliament … where such an approach would frustrate the achievement of the stated objects of the Act. … How to Interpret an Act of Parliament How to Interpret an Act of Parliament
  26. 26. • Generally avoid a wide interpretation of the words used by Parliament … – where you are dealing with … • a fiscal or penal provision, or • a provision which affects rights, interests or legitimate expectations. • Provisions which confer rights, etc … e.g. right of citizen to be heard or notified … must ordinarily be strictly followed and complied with. How to Interpret an Act of Parliament How to Interpret an Act of Parliament
  27. 27. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) Long Title … •An Act to provide for the health and safety of persons with a severe substance dependence through involuntary detention, care, treatment and stabilisation; and for other purposes. 28
  28. 28. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) 3. Objects of Act (1) The objects of this Act are: (a) to provide for the involuntary treatment of persons with a severe substance dependence with the aim of protecting their health and safety, and (b) to facilitate a comprehensive assessment of those persons in relation to their dependency, and (c) to facilitate the stabilisation of those persons through medical treatment, including, for example, medically assisted withdrawal, and (d) to give those persons the opportunity to engage in voluntary treatment and restore their capacity to make decisions about their substance use and personal welfare. 29
  29. 29. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) … (2) This Act must be interpreted, and every function conferred or imposed by this Act must be performed or exercised, so that, as far as practicable: (a) involuntary detention and treatment of those persons is a consideration of last resort, and (b) the interests of those persons is paramount in decisions made under this Act, and (c) those persons will receive the best possible treatment in the least restrictive environment that will enable treatment to be effectively given, and (d) any interference with the rights, dignity and self-respect of those persons will be kept to the minimum necessary. 30
  30. 30. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 5. Definitions (1) In this Act: … 'severe substance dependence', in relation to a person, means the person: (a) has a tolerance to a substance, and (b) shows withdrawal symptoms when the person stops using, or reduces the level of use of, the substance, and (c) has lost the capacity to make decisions about his or her substance use and personal welfare due primarily to his or her dependence on the substance. IEJ NOTE: Words such as ‘tolerance’ and ‘withdrawal symptoms’ are to be given their ordinary accepted meanings in the medical and psychological sciences. This is the statutory definition to be applied for the purposes of this Act, regardless of what might otherwise be the position in ordinary clinical practice. 'substance' means a substance, or a combination of substances, listed in Schedule 1. … … 31
  31. 31. Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 (NSW) DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 6. General restriction on involuntary detention A person must not be detained in a treatment centre under this Act unless an accredited medical practitioner has issued a dependency certificate in relation to the person. IEJ NOTE: As the Inquiry into Human Rights and Mental Illness (Burdekin Inquiry) 1991-92 pointed out, involuntary detention, for any reason and under any circumstances, is an extremely serious matter involving curtailment of several fundamental rights the most important of which is the right to liberty. 32
  32. 32. APPOINTMENT OF ACCREDITED MEDICAL PRACTITIONERS DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 7. Accredited medical practitioners (1) The Director-General may appoint a medical practitioner as an accredited medical practitioner. (2) The Director-General may appoint the holder of an office (who is a medical practitioner) as an accredited medical practitioner. (3) The Director-General may impose conditions for exercising the functions of an accredited medical practitioner. 33
  33. 33. DECLARATION OF TREATMENT CENTRES DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 8. Declaration of treatment centres   (1) The Director-General, by order published in the Gazette:  (a) may declare any premises to which this section applies, and that are specified or  described in the order, to be a treatment centre under this Act, and (b) may, in the same or another order so published, name the premises so specified or  described. (2) Without limiting subsection (1), an order may change the name assigned to any  premises specified or described in the order. (3) This section applies to the following premises:  (a) premises that belong to or are under the control of the State or an authority of the  State or a person acting on behalf of the State or an authority of the State, (b) a facility of a public health organisation within the meaning of the Health Services Act 1997, (c) premises that the owner or person who has control of the premises has agreed, by  an instrument in writing given to the Director-General, to being premises to which this  section applies. 34
  34. 34. ASSESSMENT FOR DETENTION AND TREATMENT … Assessment ‘If  the  screening  and  information  gathering  process  identifies  that  a  patient  is  likely  to  be  suitable  for  a  Dependency  Certificate,  a  referral  is  made  for  a  face  to  face  AMP  assessment  to  determine  whether  a  Dependency  Certificate  for  in-patient  detention  and  treatment  should  be  issued.  The  AMP  assessment  must  take  place  as  soon  as  practicable  after  referral  from  the  intake worker. ‘The AMP undertakes a comprehensive assessment,  building on previously gathered information, …’ - Model of Care Involuntary Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program [draft at 5/4/12], NSW Health, p 19. 35
  35. 35. ASSESSMENT FOR DETENTION AND TREATMENT … DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 9. Assessing persons for detention and treatment (1)A  medical  practitioner  may  request  an  accredited  medical practitioner to assess … IEJ NOTE: the word ‘assess’ means or at least includes both observe [incl. ‘see’; cf. s.10(2), ‘visit and assess’] and evaluate a person for detention and treatment under this Act before any decision is made or action taken under the Act. (2)  After  assessing  the  person,  the  accredited  medical  practitioner  may  issue  a  certificate  (a  'dependency certificate'), in the form shown in Schedule 2, stating the  person may be detained for treatment under this Act for  the period stated in the certificate.                          … cont’d36
  36. 36. ASSESSMENT FOR DETENTION AND TREATMENT … (3) A dependency certificate may be issued in relation to the person only if the accredited medical practitioner is satisfied: … IEJ NOTE: the word ‘satisfied’ means ‘reasonably satisfied’ in law; the words ‘reasonably satisfied’ refer to a state of satisfaction that can be arrived at by a reasonable person of the kind in question who properly understands and applies the correct ‘test(s)’ to be applied without irrelevant considerations being taken into account or otherwise acting whimsically, arbitrarily or capriciously. (a)the person has a severe substance dependence, and … IEJ NOTE: Whether a person has a ‘severe substance dependence’ within the meaning of the Act is, in law, an essential question of jurisdictional fact that enlivens jurisdiction (i.e. power) to act. Proper, lawful determination of this and related issues is an essential prerequisite or precondition for valid, lawful decision- making: cf Rand G v Mental Health Review Tribunal & Sydney Local Health District (NSW Supreme Court, White J, 2012/185645, 12 July 2012.        …cont’d  37
  37. 37. ASSESSMENT FOR DETENTION AND TREATMENT … (b)  care,  treatment  or  control  of  the  person  is  necessary to  protect the person from serious harm, and …  IEJ NOTES: * the word ‘necessary’ (as used here) means ‘reasonably required’; * ‘harm’ (as used here) is not limited to just physical harm but would also include psychological harm and possibly other forms of harm as well; see, in that regard, Re J (No. 2) [2011] NSWSC 1224 (NSW Supreme Court, White J)---a case on the Mental Health Act 2007 (NSW)---White J came to no firm conclusion as to whether ‘serious harm’ included serious financial harm, but stated that there was much to be said for the submission that ‘serious harm’ in s.14 of the Mental Health Act refers to either physical harm or psychological harm; in light of this decision, it would now appear that, even in cases of financial harm, the basis for involuntary detention would rarely, if ever, be justifiable. •(c) the person is likely to benefit from treatment for his or her  substance dependence but has refused treatment, and IEJ NOTE: The word ‘likely’ can, in some context, mean ‘probably’, that is to say, more likely than not or more than a 50 per cent chance; however the word can also mean ‘a real chance or possibility’, that is, a real or not remote chance or possibility regardless of whether it is less or more than 50 per cent; arguably, the word ‘likely’ (as used here) is not synonymous with ‘more likely than not’.                                                                     …cont’d
  38. 38. ASSESSMENT FOR DETENTION AND TREATMENT (d) no other appropriate and less restrictive means for  dealing with the person are reasonably available. (4) The accredited medical practitioner may have regard to  …  IEJ NOTE: arguably not an exhaustive list (except arguably as respects the classes of persons, to whom harm may occur, that may be taken into account), but be careful what other matters you take into account. any serious harm that may occur to: (a) children in the care of the person, or (b) dependants of the person. (5) If a dependency certificate is issued in relation to the  person assessed under this section, the person may be detained in accordance with the certificate for treatment under this Act. 39
  39. 39. Form of dependency certificate … DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) SCHEDULE 2 - Dependency certificate (Section 9 (2))   Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 Part 1 I, [name in full - use block letters] (accredited medical practitioner) of [address] certify that  on [date] immediately before, or shortly before, completing this certificate, I personally assessed  [name of person in full] under section 9 of the  Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007 at [state  place where assessment took place] for a period of [state length of assessment]. I certify the following matters: 1. I am of the opinion that: (a) the person I assessed (the dependent person) has a severe substance dependence, and (b) care, treatment or control of the person is necessary to protect the person from serious harm,  and (c)  the person is  likely to  benefit from  treatment for his or  her substance dependence but the  person has refused treatment, and (d)  no  other  appropriate  and  less  restrictive  means  for  dealing  with  the  person  are  reasonably available.                                                                         … cont’d 40
  40. 40. Form of dependency certificate … …  2. The following incidents and/or abnormalities of behaviour have been observed by  me and/or communicated to me by others (state name, relationship and address of  each informant): [emphasis added] 3. The general medical and/or surgical condition of the dependent person is as follows: 4. The following medication (if any) has been administered for the purposes of treating  the dependent person: 5.  I  am  of  the  opinion  the  dependent  person  should  be  detained  for  28*  days  for  treatment under the Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007. (* lesser days may be inserted in item 5 by the accredited medical practitioner) 6. I am not a near relative or the primary carer of the dependent person.  Signed this          day of             20..  Signature   41
  41. 41. Form of dependency certificate … Part 2  A member of staff of the NSW Health Service or a police officer may transport the dependent  person to a treatment centre under the Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act 2007. If the assistance of a police officer is required, this Part of the Form must be completed. YOU  SHOULD  NOT  REQUEST  THIS  ASSISTANCE  UNLESS  THERE  ARE  SERIOUS  CONCERNS  RELATING  TO  THE  SAFETY  OF  THE  DEPENDENT  PERSON  OR  OTHER  PERSONS  IF  THE  PERSON  IS  TAKEN  TO  A  TREATMENT  CENTRE  WITHOUT  THE  ASSISTANCE OF A POLICE OFFICER. I have assessed the risk and I am of the opinion that there are serious concerns relating to the  safety of the dependent person or other persons if the dependent person is taken to a treatment  centre  without  the  assistance  of  a  police  officer.  The  reason  for  me  being  of  this  opinion  is  (include any information known about the dependent person relevant to the risk):   Signed this          day of           20..  Signature   Note: [NOT REPRODUCED ON THIS SLIDE, BUT MUST BE INCLUDED]            42
  42. 42. ORDER FOR ASSESSMENT … DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 10. Order for assessment (1)  This  section  applies  if  the  accredited  medical  practitioner  is  unable to access the  person  to  conduct  the assessment requested under section 9. (2)  A  Magistrate  or  authorised  officer  may,  by  order,  authorise the accredited medical practitioner to visit and  assess the person to ascertain whether a dependency certificate should be issued in relation to the person. (3)  However,  the  order  may  be  made  only  if  the  Magistrate  or  officer  is  satisfied,  by  evidence  on  oath,  that:                               … cont’d 43
  43. 43. ORDER FOR ASSESSMENT … (a)  the  person  is  likely  to  have  a  severe substance dependence, and (b)  the  person  is  likely  to  be  in need of protection from serious harm [IEJ NOTE: ‘harm’ (here) is not limited to just physical harm]  or  others are likely to be in need of protection from serious physical harm [IEJ NOTE: ‘harm’ (as used here) is limited to just ‘physical’ harm], and (c)  because  of  physical inaccessibility,  the  person  could  not,  but  for  the  making  of  an  order  under  this  section,  be  assessed, and (d) the person is likely to benefit from the treatment.                                                                                                  … cont’d 44
  44. 44. ORDER FOR ASSESSMENT (4) The order may also authorise another person (including a police officer) who  may  be  required  to  assist  the  accredited  medical  practitioner  in  conducting  the  assessment to accompany the accredited medical practitioner. (5)  The  accredited  medical  practitioner  and  any  other  person  authorised  under  this  section may enter  premises, if need be by  force [IEJ NOTE: ‘force’ means ‘reasonable force,’ that is, whatever force is reasonably necessary in order to effect an entry, but no more force must be used than is necessary for the purpose of effecting entry], to carry out the assessment. (6) If a dependency certificate is issued in relation to the person assessed under  this  section,  the  person  may  be  detained  in  accordance  with  the  certificate  for  treatment under this Act. (7) A person who takes action under the order must, as soon as practicable after  taking the action, give written notice of the action taken to the person who made  the order. (8) In this section: 'authorised officer' means an authorised officer within the meaning of the Criminal  Procedure Act 1986. 45
  45. 45. If certificate not issued, advice must be given DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 12. If certificate not issued, advice must be given (1)  Subsection  (2)  applies  if  the  accredited  medical  practitioner  is  not satisfied a  dependency  certificate  should  be  issued  in  relation  to  the  person  being  assessed under this Part. (2) The practitioner must, if the practitioner considers it  appropriate, give advice on alternative options available  for treating the person: (a) to the person, and (b) to the primary carer, if any, of the person. 46
  46. 46. Length of initial detention and review of dependency certificate DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 14. Length of initial detention and review of dependency certificate If  an  accredited  medical  practitioner  issues  a  dependency  certificate in relation to a person being assessed: (a) the person must not be detained for treatment for more than  28 days after the day the certificate is issued, and (b)  an  accredited  medical  practitioner  must,  as soon as practicable [IEJ NOTE: those words mean ‘in the shortest time that can be arranged in all the circumstances’] after  the  certificate  is  issued, bring the person before a Magistrate for a review of the  issuing of the certificate. Note: Under Part 4, the period of detention may be reduced or it may be extended for up to a total  period of not more than 3 months from the day the certificate is issued. 47
  47. 47. Review by Magistrate … DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 34. Reviewing issue of dependency certificates (1)  A  Magistrate  must  hold  an  inquiry  in  relation  to  a  person  brought before the Magistrate in accordance with section 14. (2) An  accredited  medical  practitioner  must  make  all necessary arrangements to ensure that: (a)  all  appropriate  medical  witnesses  appear  before  the  Magistrate, and (b)  other  relevant  medical  evidence  concerning  the  person  is  placed before the Magistrate. (3) The Magistrate must determine whether or not, on the balance  of probabilities, the person meets the criteria for detention under  section 9.                                                                            … cont’d 48
  48. 48. Review by Magistrate … … (4) For that purpose, the Magistrate must consider the following: (a) the reports and recommendations of any accredited medical practitioner who has  examined the person, (b) any proposed further treatment for the person and the likelihood the treatment will  be of benefit to the person, (c) the views of the person (if any), (d)  any  cultural  factors  relating  to  the  person  that  may  be  relevant  to  the  determination, (e) any other relevant information given to the Magistrate. (5) If the Magistrate is satisfied, on the balance of probabilities, that the person meets  the criteria for detention under section 9, the Magistrate may, having regard to the  matters considered under subsection (4): (a) confirm the issuing of the dependency certificate, or (b) confirm the issuing of the dependency certificate, but for a shorter period.  … cont’d 49
  49. 49. Review by Magistrate … … (6) If the Magistrate acts under subsection (5) (b),  the certificate has effect only for the shorter period. (7) If the Magistrate is not satisfied, on the balance  of probabilities, that the person meets the criteria  for detention under section 9, the Magistrate must  order  that  the  person  be  discharged  from  the  treatment centre and the dependency certificate is  of no further effect. 50
  50. 50. Other Statutory Functions of an Accredited Medical Practitioner … An accredited medical practitioner … •may give or authorise the giving of, such treatment (including  any medication) as the practitioner thinks fit for the treatment of  the dependent person’s substance dependence (s.15(2)) •must  give  the  dependent  person  an  oral explanation and  a  written statement  of  the  person’s  legal rights and other entitlements under the Act (s.16) •must, not later than 24 hours after the dependency certificate  has been issued, take all reasonably practicable steps to notify the primary carer of the dependent person that the person has  been detained (s.17(1)) •must  give,  or  cause  to  be  given,  to  the  dependent  person  a  statement of the rights of appeal  conferred  on  the  person  under the Act (s.18(1))                                               … cont’d51
  51. 51. Other Statutory Functions of an Accredited Medical Practitioner … • must  take  all  reasonably  practicable  steps  to  notify the primary carer of  a  dependent  person  if  any  of  certain  specified events occurs (s.19(1)) • may  apprehend  a  dependent  person,  or  direct  that  the  person  be  apprehended,  in  certain  specified  circumstances  (s.22(1)) • may request that a police officer apprehend, or assist in apprehending,  a  dependent  person  in  certain  specified  circumstances (s.23(1)) • may discharge a dependent person from a treatment centre  at  any  time  if  the  practitioner  is  satisfied  the  person’s  continued  presence  at  the  treatment  centre  will  not  achieve  the purpose for which the person was detained (s.24(1))  … cont’d52
  52. 52. Other Statutory Functions of an Accredited Medical Practitioner • must discharge a dependent person from a treatment centre  if the practitioner is satisfied the person no longer meets the  criteria for detention and treatment under s.9(3) OR when the  dependency  certificate  in  relation  to  the  person  ceases  to  have effect (s.24(2)) • must take all reasonably practicable steps to ensure that  the  dependent  person,  and  the  primary  carer  of  the  person,  are  consulted  in  relation  to  planning  the  person’s  discharge  and any later treatment or other action considered in relation  to the person (s.25(1)) • may apply to a Magistrate to extend the effective period of  a  dependency  certificate  in  certain  specified  circumstances  (s.35). 53
  53. 53. Limitation on Personal Liability DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT ACT 2007 (NSW) 49. Liability of police officers and health care professionals exercising functions under this Act (1) Any member of staff of the NSW Health Service, health care professional or police  officer who, in good faith, exercises a function that is conferred or imposed on that person by or under this Act is not personally liable for any injury or damage  caused by the exercise of that function. (2) Nothing  in  this  section,  or  any  other  provision  of  this  Act  or  the  regulations,  relieves a medical practitioner or other person from liability in respect of carrying out medical treatment on a person to which the medical practitioner or other person  would  have  been  subject  had the treatment been carried out with the person’s consent. (3) Nothing  in  this  section  affects  any  exclusion  from  liability  provided  by  another  provision of this Act or any other law. (4) In  this  section,  'health  care  professional'  means  a  person  registered  under  the  Health Practitioner Regulation National Law. 54
  54. 54. Some important legal rules with respect to the making of lawful administrative decisions 55
  55. 55. These people … when exercising functions for the purposes of the D & A Treatment Act … are bound by the rules of Administrative Law … • Accredited Medical Practitioners (AMPs) … – an appropriately qualified medical professional, delegated by the  Director General and NSW Health, and appropriately accredited to  issue Dependency Certificates, under the Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act (2007) • Involuntary Treatment Liaison Officers (ITLOs) … – a health or medical professional, including qualified doctors, nurses or  psychiatrists who (is trained and skilled to) assess, screen,  recommend to refer and refer persons (if a doctor) for assessment by  an AMP for a Dependency Certificate under the Drug and Alcohol Treatment Act (2007). 56
  56. 56. What is ‘Administrative Law’? • A branch of ‘public law’ (cf ‘private law’) • The body of common law [supplemented by  statute law] that regulates the exercise of  power and the making of decisions by: – the executive branch of government,  – the administrative arm of government, and – non-government bodies (‘domestic tribunals’) 57
  57. 57. What is ‘Administrative Law’? • ADMINISTRATIVE LAW is ‘all’ about: – DECISIONS … and DECISIONS … and  DECISIONS! – DECISION MAKERS … of all different kinds – FACTS … occurrences in space and time – POWER … very much so! – FAIRNESS … and, sadly, UNFAIRNESS – RULES … naturally! ... lots of them! 58
  58. 58. ‘Administrative Law’ … Some Important Concepts • Judicial Review – can only be performed by a superior court – is concerned with scrutinising and passing judgment on the ‘lawfulness’ of an  administrative decision • ‘Lawfulness’ of an administrative decision  ordinarily involves BOTH – issues of ‘fairness’, and – issues of ‘power’ (or ‘jurisdiction’) 59
  59. 59. … But what is ‘the law’? • The law is what the courts tell us it is. • A lawyer makes an informed ‘prediction’ as to what he or she  thinks a court of competent  jurisdiction would declare to be the  law on the facts of the particular case. • ‘The life of the law is experience, not  logic’ (Holmes J). 60
  60. 60. Legal Reasoning • INDUCTION – A rule, principle or doctrine is ‘arrived at’ (i.e.  extracted or formulated) from a number of  particular instances or cases. • DEDUCTION – The rule, principle or doctrine is then ‘applied’ to  the particular circumstances of the case at hand. • LEGAL INTUITION – ‘Situation-sense’. 61
  61. 61. ‘Administrative Law’ … Some Other Important Concepts • Concept of Rational Humaneness • Theory of ‘equal power’ • Duty to act honestly and  fairly 62
  62. 62. Administrative Law    THE CONCEPT  OF 'RATIONAL HUMANENESS' 63
  63. 63. ‘Rational Humaneness’ • John Morley • 1st Viscount Morley of Blackburn,  OM, PC (1838- 1923) • British Liberal  statesman,  writer and  newspaper  editor.  64
  64. 64. THE NEED FOR RATIONAL HUMANENESS 'A RATIONALITY THAT IS INFORMED BY  CONSIDERATION AND COMPASSION FOR THE  NEEDS AND DISTRESSES OF HUMAN BEINGS' - Gordon Hawkins (1919-2004) Criminologist, Academic and Philosopher. 65
  65. 65. Underlying Philosophical Ideas • The principle of ‘equal power’* • cf negotiation theory and practice – an administrator has superior power over  others – the rules, principles and doctrines are  designed to ensure, so far as possible, that an  administrator acts as if there were a position of equal power * See Peter G Woolcock, Secular Humanism: Ethics Without Religion (Adelaide  SA: Humanist Society of South Australia, 1989).
  66. 66. Administrative Law THE DUTY TO ACT HONESTLY 67
  67. 67. DUTY TO ACT HONESTLY THE WORD 'HONESTY' [Latin, ‘honestas’] MEANS ONENESS WITH THE TRUTH, THE FACTS. 68
  68. 68. WHAT IS A FACT? A FACT IS AN OCCURRENCE IN SPACE AND TIME. - John Anderson (1893-1962) Challis Professor of Philosophy University of Sydney, 1927-58 'Father of Australian Realism' 69
  69. 69. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … •PRIMARY FACTS •ULTIMATE QUESTIONS OF FACT 70
  70. 70. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … An ultimate question of fact often involves several questions (‘layers’) of primary fact … 71
  71. 71. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … By way of example … ULTIMATE QUESTION OF FACT: Whether a person has a ‘severe substance dependence’ … THAT question involves a number of matters … 72
  72. 72. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … 'severe substance dependence', in relation to a person, means the person: (a) has a tolerance to a substance, and (b) shows withdrawal symptoms when the person stops using, or reduces the level of use of, the substance, and (c) has lost the capacity to make decisions about his or her substance use and personal welfare due primarily to his or her dependence on the substance. 73
  73. 73. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … •Facts need to be adduced to establish all of the required matters. 74
  74. 74. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … •The adduced facts comprise what are known as the primary facts. 75
  75. 75. Primary Facts and Ultimate Questions of Facts … • They are the basic ‘raw’ facts that must be adduced to establish the ultimate question of fact falling for decision. 76
  76. 76. Matters of ‘fact’ and matters of ‘opinion’ … • In law, every ‘opinion’, to be ‘valid’, must be based upon, and supported by, facts relevant to the particular question or issue. 77
  77. 77. Matters of ‘fact’ and matters of ‘opinion’ … • Opinions can be said to be ‘true’ or ‘false’ … when attention is directed, not to the opinion itself, but to the thing that the opinion is of. 78
  78. 78. Matters of ‘fact’ and matters of ‘opinion’ … •The test of a ‘true’ opinion is … to ‘see’ whether or not something is the case. 79
  79. 79. Matters of fact … and opinion To find out whether a fact exists, you … ‘look and see’, or observe … or examine. 80
  80. 80. 81
  81. 81. The Importance of Facts • Nothing is superior to facts! • Despite the difficulties, always look for the 'facticity' of things ... the 'thing-in-itself'. • Draw appropriate conclusions and inferences from facts. • Document all findings of relevant fact. 82
  82. 82. THE FIRST AND MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION FOR ANY DECISION-MAKER DO I HAVE POWER TO ACT? 83
  83. 83. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS … 1. A MUST/MAY DO X. 84
  84. 84. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS … 2. A MUST/MAY DO X IF FACT Y EXISTS. 85
  85. 85. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS … 3. A MUST/MAY DO X IF A IS SATISFIED THAT FACT Y EXISTS. 86
  86. 86. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS … 4. A MUST/MAY DO X PROVIDED B CONSENTS. 87
  87. 87. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS … 5. A MUST/MAY DO X OR Y. 88
  88. 88. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS … 6. A MUST/MAY DO X BUT ONLY FOR PURPOSE Y. 89
  89. 89. DUTIES AND DISCRETIONS 7. A MUST/MAY DO X PROVIDED A FIRST DOES B. 90
  90. 90. Failure to Comply with Procedural Requirements … A MUST/MAY DO X PROVIDED A FIRST DOES B. … BUT WHAT IF THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN? 91
  91. 91. Failure to Comply with Procedural Requirements The Court Will Ask … WAS IT A PURPOSE OF THE LEGISLATION THAT AN ACT DONE IN BREACH OF THE LEGISLATIVE PROVISION SHOULD BE INVALID? See Project Blue Sky Inc v Australian Broadcasting Authority (1998) 194 CLR 355 92
  92. 92. ‘Abuse of Power’ 93
  93. 93. Bad Faith/Improper Purpose • A decision-maker must not exercise their powers in bad faith or for an improper purpose. 94
  94. 94. Relevant and Irrelevant Considerations • A decision-maker: –must not base a decision on irrelevant or extraneous considerations, and –must give due and proper consideration to all relevant considerations. 95
  95. 95. Relevant and Irrelevant Considerations • A decision-maker MUST take into account all relevant considerations that the decision-maker is bound, as opposed to entitled, to take into account. 96
  96. 96. Relevant and Irrelevant Considerations • The failure to ‘take into consideration’ a relevant consideration is made out only if the decision-maker is bound to take into account what is said to be the relevant, or potentially relevant, consideration. 97
  97. 97. Relevant and Irrelevant Considerations However, a matter for consideration which the decision-maker is bound to take into account might be so insignificant that a failure to take it into account will not materially affected the decision. For the most part, it is a matter for the decision- maker to decide the weight to be assigned to each of the relevant matters for consideration. 98
  98. 98. Manifest Unreasonableness • A decision-maker must not exercise its powers ‘unreasonably’ … in the sense that … 99
  99. 99. Manifest Unreasonableness … no reasonable decision- maker … acting within the ‘four corners of its jurisdiction’ … could ever have made the decision in question. 100
  100. 100. Lack of Proportionality •A decision may be so lacking in reasonable proportionality as 'not to be a real exercise of the power'. 101
  101. 101. Lack of Proportionality •There must exist a reasonable relationship between the 'end' and the 'means' of the power. 102
  102. 102. Uncertainty/Lack of Finality •A decision must be: –‘certain’* and –‘final’.** * capable of being given a sensible or ascertainable meaning ** doesn’t leave any issues unresolved 103
  103. 103. Fettering Discretion •A decision-maker must not fetter itself in advance as to how it will exercise its statutory discretion. 104
  104. 104. Fettering Discretion • … ‘tying oneself in knots … fetters …’ 105
  105. 105. Acting on a Policy • A decision-maker: –must examine in detail each matter before it on its merits, and … 106
  106. 106. Acting on a Policy –must not automatically or inflexibly apply an overall policy without considering the particular circumstances of the matter. 107
  107. 107. Acting Under Dictation • A decision-maker, entrusted with a statutory discretion: –must exercise that power itself and independently, and –must not be dictated to by a third party. 108
  108. 108. Dictation can occur even if the other person: • does not intend to dictate, or • has given no direction that the decision maker must do X. Acting Under Dictation 109
  109. 109. The Rules of Procedural Fairness (aka The Rules of Natural Justice) • Hearing rule - Audi alteram partem rule – Hear the other side • Bias rule – Nemo judex rule – Nemo debet esse judex in propria sua causa • (‘No one can be a judge in their own case’) • ‘No evidence’ (or ‘probative evidence’) rule – Decisions must be based upon logically probative material 110
  110. 110. 111 Kioa v West (1985) 159 CLR 550 • 'The law has now developed to a point where it may be accepted that there is a common law duty to act fairly, in the sense of according procedural fairness, in the making of administrative decisions which affect rights, interests and legitimate expectations, subject only to the clear manifestation of a contrary statutory intention.' – Mason J. 111
  111. 111. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule • 'The critical question in most cases is not whether the rules of procedural fairness apply, but what does the duty to act fairly require in the circumstances of the particular case?' – See Kioa v West (1985) per Mason J. 112
  112. 112. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule •The minimum content of the hearing rule is … THE GIVING OF NOTICE. 113
  113. 113. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule • The power to cause a person to be detained for treatment under the Act against their will may need to be exercised peremptorily in many cases, … without a 'hearing' first being afforded the affected person. 114
  114. 114. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule •In many cases, the affected person simply will not be in a mental state conducive to being 'heard'. 115
  115. 115. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule • HOWEVER, at the very minimum, the person will need to be told, as clearly as possible, and humanely, of ... 116
  116. 116. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule •the terms and effect of the decision, and •its implications in practical terms. 117
  117. 117. ‘Content’ of the Hearing Rule •Each case will need to be assessed on its own special facts. 118
  118. 118. ‘Content’ and Application of the Hearing Rule … Preliminary Decision Making and ITLOs Where a decision making process involves different stages or steps before a final decision is made: •The requirements of procedural fairness are ordinarily satisfied if the decision making process, viewed in its entirety, accords procedural fairness. •A right to be heard later will not 'cure' a lack or deficiency of procedural fairness unless … • the steps or stages in the decision making process, and • the various persons and bodies involved in that process, all form part of the one decision making process. •It is not always sufficient to say that if the rules of procedural fairness apply to the procedure as a whole they do not have to be followed in any individual stage. … (cont’d) 119
  119. 119. ‘Content’ and Application of the Hearing Rule … Preliminary Decision Making and ITLOs … (cont’d) •The question always remains in every case whether fairness requires that a hearing be given at, relevantly, a preliminary stage. •There is no absolute rule that procedural fairness need not be observed at one stage of a procedure if there is to be, under the procedure, an opportunity to be heard later … • particularly so where the relevant legislation is silent as to the procedure to be followed at each stage. •As a matter of statutory construction and interpretation, legislation providing for an opportunity to be heard later is not to be construed as necessarily excluding a right to be informed and heard at the first or earlier stage. … (cont’d) 120
  120. 120. ‘Content’ and Application of the Hearing Rule … Preliminary Decision Making and ITLOs … (cont’d) What all of this means is that preliminary decision making by an ITLO is … of vital legal, as well as clinical, importance! Hence, the need to observe the rules of Administrative Law.121
  121. 121. The Bias Rule • 'It is of fundamental importance that justice should not only be done, but should manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done.' – R v Sussex Justices; Ex parte McCarthy [1924] 1 KB 256 per Lord Hewart. 122
  122. 122. The Bias Rule • The test for bias is whether the relevant circumstances are such as would give rise in the mind of a fair-minded and informed member of the public, to a reasonable apprehension or suspicion of a lack of impartiality on the part of the decision-maker. – Webb v R (1994) 181 CLR 41. 123
  123. 123. The Bias Rule NOTE. An accredited medical practitioner must not be a near relative or the primary carer of the dependent person. 124
  124. 124. 125 The ‘No evidence’ (‘probative evidence’) rule … R v Deputy Industrial Injuries Commissioner ex p Moore [1965] 1 QB 456 per Lord Diplock: 'The requirement that a person exercising quasi-judicial functions must base his decisions on evidence means no more than it must be based upon material which tends logically to show the existence or non- existence of facts relevant to the issue to be determined, … cont’d 125
  125. 125. 126 The ‘No evidence’ (‘probative evidence’) rule … … or to show the likelihood or unlikelihood of the occurrence of some future event the occurrence of which would be relevant. It means that he must not spin a coin, or consult an astrologer, but he may take into account any material which, as a matter of reason, has probative value, in the sense mentioned above.' - R v Deputy Industrial Injuries Commissioner ex p Moore [1965] 1 QB 456 per Lord Diplock. 126
  126. 126. 127 The ‘No evidence’ (‘probative evidence’) rule ‘… [one] must not spin a coin, or consult an astrologer …’ - R v Dep Industrial Injuries Comsr ex p Moore [1965] 1 QB 456 per Lord Diplock. 127
  127. 127. When called upon to make a decision … Questions to ask oneself … •Do I have power to act? Have I re-read the legislation? •Have I considered whether there is a conflict of interest? •What are the important facts … and the relevant matters for consideration? •Have I sufficient probative material on which to make a decision? •What policy and/or procedure should I follow? •What are my choices? •What impacts will each choice have? •Which choice gives the best outcome? •How do I feel about my decision? •Do I need to reconsider my choices? •Have I documented my fact-finding, inquiries, decision-making process, decision, and reasons for the decision? •Would my decision---and the decision-making process---stand the scrutiny of the Court? 128
  128. 128. Copyright Ellis-Jones Enterprises Pty Limited 2012 All Rights

×